Spec. Coll. copy is part of a collection (Collection 1605). To page this item, use the collection record; to find the collection record, search the title: Nitka collection of fantastic fiction. Item is in box 71. Purchase, Zeitlin & Ver Brugge Booksellers, 1967
May 24, 2010
Dull, Boring, but Not Unendurable
*Twilight,* though billed among a collection of fantastic fiction, has little or no interest for the
fantasy reader of today. We have to remember that before the ghettoization of science fiction by Gernsback and the fans, before the sub-sub-genrification of stories by the Depression pulp magazines, that the use of fantasy elements anywhere was considered legitimate if it let the author tell the story she wished. In this case, the story is of a perfervid love triangle set before 1900, seen from too close-up by the narrator of the frame story. The morphia dreams that just happen to be true are simply a POV cheat, as it were, and the only fantasy element involved. The frame story takes for-freakin'-ever to get around to the actual story, to boot. Literally, chapters
and chapters of fan-dancing before establishing what the book is actually focused on.
Any interest this has is for the period personalities: an apparently large population of female writers suffering heart complaints (corsetry, of course, could have nothing to do with it), some of whom would rather literally die that make a court appearance, even against someone who has committed a crime against the writer; men who choose honor over convience, or love over honor (but, of course, must then be punished with madness) or honor over love; people to whom even a wronged divorcee is a object of horror and sin.
Let's warn the reader that "Frank Danby" has only bad things to say about her villainous
Christian Scientists (rather as a modern writer might use Scientologists) and refers to one maid as having "a golliwog face" which I believe means the maid is black.
All in all, only a tease, luring the modern reader page after page with a bait of "fantasy" only not to be, say, a house between worlds or on top of a hellmouth or fairy rath, but only a purple period romance with an irascible and annoying narrator.